I’d like to think of Earth Day as a sort of holiday when environmentalists get to run outside to frolic in the sun, hugging trees as they go about their relaxed green ways. In reality, Earth Day — and really Earth Month as a whole — ends up being a rather stressful affair for many greenies. My email inbox has been extra full this month with Earth Day product pitches and sales, and my calendar extra crowded with can’t-miss eco-events.

That makes April a great time for yoga and meditation. And I got a little boost for both of those practices when eco-friendly yoga company Manduka sent me one of the company's new cork yoga blocks for review.

Part of the Manduka Lyric series — the company’s first fine arts graphic prints collection — my Om yoga block‘s made entirely of sustainably harvested and renewable cork. Unlike those too-light, artificial foam blocks that easily topple over and get scuffed up quickly, Manduka’s cork blocks are made to last.

I actually rarely use blocks when I do yoga — but I’ve recently learned to meditate on them, either sitting on the long front edge in cross-legged position, or placing it beneath me lengthwise in kneeling position to take a little pressure off the knees. The cork block is firm and sturdy with a little heft — but has a little more give than the super hard wood blocks.

Since the entire block is made of cork, it should biodegrade easily once I’m done with it — though that won’t be for a long, long time. Even the packaging is minimalist and green; a simple recycled paper band adorns the Manduka cork block on arrival.

Need a little extra om yourself this Earth Month? Even if you don’t have a lot of time, you can fit in a short meditation. Meditation Oasis offers a whole bunch of free meditation podcasts less than 10 minutes long. And if you’d like a yoga block to sit on or practice with, Manduka Lyric cork blocks cost $30 each at Manduka’s web store and come in four different designs.

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